how to pack for a move

Whether you're moving a few miles or whole mountains away, resourceful packing maneuvers can make your move go a whole lot smoother. Learn to pack like a pro with this moving checklist.

get enough boxes

The right amount of boxes is often more than you think you'll need. You might forget a few things that'll need a last-minute container, or find yourself with indiscriminate items that can only be lumped together with similar things.

Worst case scenario, you could wind up with a few extra boxes that can be returned to a moving company (if that's where you got them), recycled, or donated. And don't forget to make use of your suitcases, too.

And don't overload them!

When you're packing, try to keep all of your boxes under 50 pounds. Otherwise, the bottom could fall out or it could be too heavy to lift. A good rule is to place heavier things in smaller boxes and lighter things in larger boxes. It's helpful to bundle breakable items and label those boxes as fragile, so both you and your movers know not to stack them.

packing tips for moving

There's a science to packing appliances, electronics, clothing … basically anything and everything that belongs in your house. Here are some simple, safe packing tips for those everyday items:

  • When disconnecting wires or cables, you can keep them coiled together with a twist-tie, seal them in a plastic bag, and tape the bag to the corresponding electronic (be it a TV, video game system, or appliance)
  • If there are drawers you want to keep intact, try taping strong plastic wrap around the top to lock contents in. Some drawers can even function as their own boxes this way.
  • Pack plates vertically, rather than stacking them on top of each other. It takes the pressure off the center of the plate, so they're less likely to break. And make sure they're padded enough to fill the entire box so they don't shift during the move.
  • Make use of wardrobe boxes by storing closet accessories in shopping bags beneath your hanging clothes. As long as you don't overload it, it's a great way to make sure your closet items stay together.

make an inventory

Making a list of everything in your boxes as you pack can prove useful when it comes time to take stock of everything in your new place. If you want, you can write a number on each box and list its contents as minimally or descriptively as you want in a list with matching numbers, so you're a bit more orderly and efficient when you're searching for something specific.

color-code boxes

You can make sure your boxes go to the right rooms by color-coding them with packing tape. All you have to do is tag each box with a piece of colored tape that corresponds to a piece of the same tape on the door of whichever room the box belongs in. Your movers will know where your things should go without having to read the side of a box.

pack an overnight bag

At the end of your moving day, it's nice to be able to shower and put sheets on the bed without rummaging through boxes to find what you need. It's good to have a go-to bag for the first night in your new home with toiletries, a spare towel, a change of clothes, and any necessary bedding.

Put essentials in a clear container

What about the odds and ends you'll need during the first few days of unpacking? A clear, hard container is great for storing things you're likely to need right away. Consider adding items like:

  • Garbage bags
  • Paper towels
  • Soap
  • Disposable flatware
  • Scissors
  • A box cutter
  • A tool kit
  • An emergency kit

Can't decide what else to include? Think about anything that's fundamental to your routine, or things that will help make unpacking easier.

prep the new place

Putting hand soap and toilet paper in your new bathroom before you're moved in can save you a lot of stress when the place is finally filled with boxes. Little fixes like that — and putting a few groceries in the fridge, even hanging curtains, or just vacuuming ahead of time — make it easier to feel at home before you even unpack.

get homeowners insurance for your place

While homeowners insurance doesn't cover the moving process itself, it covers many perils that can come with owning a home — from hailstorms, to a home burglary, and beyond. Get a free quote online and start customizing a home policy unique to your abode right away.

Or if you're moving and already have a home policy with us, speak with one of our agents at 1-800-ESURANCE (1-800-378-7262) to update your insurance accordingly and make sure there are no gaps in coverage.

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